If you love The Daily Beast’s royal coverage, then we hope you’ll enjoy The Royalist, an all-new members-only series for Beast Inside. Become a member to get it in your inbox every Sunday.
Meghan Markle and Kate Middleton gathered together with their husbands, Prince Harry and Prince William, for the first time since Christmas Day today. However, video footage of the event did little to dispel rumors of tension between the two couples.
Harry, William, Meghan, and Kate walked into Buckingham Palace’s White Drawing Room four abreast. However, it was notable the the two men took the central positions in the group with their wives as far apart as possible.
Meghan wore a $1,200 Amanda Wakeley coat teamed with a floral dress which Kensington Palace said was made by a private dressmaker. Kate wore an elegant pale green blouse dress and suede nude heels at the event, which was held to commemorate fifty years since Prince Charles was officially created Prince of Wales.
Harry, who drank water in solidarity with his pregnant wife, appeared reserved as he was pictured with his brother, which will do little to quell rumors that the two brothers have fallen out since Harry’s marriage to Meghan.
Also notable by their absence were Charles’ brothers, Andrew and Edward. Their expected non-appearance was reported by The Daily Beast this weekend. Charles has made little secret of his lack of enthusiasm for the company of his brothers, unlike his sister, Anne, who was present.
Prince Philip, 97, who has retired from official duties, was not expected to attend and did not.
While the event offered a clear opportunity for William and Kate and Harry and Meghan to present a united front after months of damaging speculation about a feud between the two brothers and the duchesses, they seemed unwilling to take the opportunity.
The British press were quick to see their lack of overt friendliness as evidence that Meghan is still struggling to be accepted by the royals; the Sun recruited a body language expert who declared that Meghan’s positioning within the group showed she was "isolated" from her in-laws.
While this is almost certainly an exaggeration (in fact she was pictured chatting with Charles, and the Telegraph today carries well-sourced story about the connection Meghan has forged with Charles, bonding over art and royal history), there is little doubt that the young royals missed an opportunity to present a truly united front today.